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Volume 6 No. 215


Eiffage SA "lost money" on building the state-of-the-art football stadium in Lille for the 2016 European championships, according to Francois de Beaupuy of BLOOMBERG. It is "banking on a return coming from outside of France." Eiffage and its French rivals in the construction industry, Vinci SA and Bouygues SA, "are building and renovating six stadiums across the country for the event, anticipating that features like retractable roofs will lure orders from the more deep-pocketed governments of Qatar and Russia." Those two countries will host the football World Cup in '18 and '22 and have earmarked $85B for arenas and infrastructure such as railways and hotels. Eiffage's project head for the €324M ($427M) Lille stadium, Bertrand d'Herouville, said, "This is a showcase stadium for us. It's a reference for us. If we can replicate it, we'll do it." The stadium is "the only one in France with a retractable roof and a built-in arena under a sliding pitch." Vinci CEO Xavier Huillard said, "We will be able to capitalize and show our Qatari friends what we're doing in Nice and in Bordeaux." Qatar agreed to spend as much as $65B to host the World Cup. The plan "includes stadiums equipped with solar-powered air conditioning" and constructing a $25B rail and metro network. Russia in September doubled its forecast for spending on the World Cup to almost $20B (BLOOMBERG, 6/10).

Newly promoted German 3rd League football club SV Elversberg "will completely renovate its Waldstadion Kaiserlinde," the club's home ground, and bring it up to 2nd Bundesliga standards, according to Henning Klefisch of LIGA3 ONLINE. In four separate construction phases, the stadium "will be expanded to 15,000 roofed seats." This includes "a standing room area for 10,000 fans." In addition, the stadium "will get 1,000 business seats, which are supposed to distinctively increase the club's revenue." The club plans for construction costs of about €8M ($10.6M) for the four-year renovation (LIGA3 ONLINE, 6/9).

La Liga side Atlético Madrid has begun to remove the grass from its Vicente Calderón Stadium because of the upcoming Bon Jovi concert on June 27. In this way, "Atlético wants to minimize the damages that can result from an event on the grass," which occurred just last year when a Coldplay concert left the field damaged just days before the Copa del Rey finals between Barcelona and Athletic Bilbao (EP, 6/11). ... Serie A side Cagliari Calcio has been "granted the first bit of good news in months" regarding its stadium situation, as modification work on its Is Arenas is approved. The club has spent the '12-13 season in a state of uncertainty and "once more had to play a number of home games at neutral stadiums" (FOOTBALL ITALIA, 6/10).